Montana Lawmakers Want More State Fund Oversight

January 20, 2009

The Montana State Fund is bucking a proposal for more legislative oversight of its workers’ compensation insurance program.

A state lawmaker says the state is on the hook for financial shortfalls at the quasi-private operation. Democratic Sen. Ron Erickson said the State Fund should undergo in-depth financial examinations, and the state should get the results.

Erickson told a Senate committee on Jan. 16, 2009, that his bill would require the State Fund to hire a qualified firm to conduct the examinations. The panel did not immediately vote on the idea.

Private insurers support the idea. They say it’s only fair since they have to file reports with the state auditor’s office.

The State Fund says the $200,000 expense is unnecessary because the operation is already subject to legislative audits.

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